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Blueberry chutney.

It may sound somewhat surprising, but blueberries make a good base for savory sauces and condiments. The Wobbly Barn in Killington, Vermont, serves roast quail with blueberry sauce and the Editor likes to serve the little birds with this chutney on the side. Also good with potted foods--chicken, duck, pheasant or rabbit--and cold ham or sandwiches; use it as you would cornichons, for example. No cooking required: Easy, fast and cheap, although you will need a modicum of foresight; it needs to chill overnight.


-½ cup white wine vinegar
-scant Tablespoon coarse salt (we like Maldon)
-2 Tablespoons sugar
-2 Tablespoons warm water
-a box (1/2 lb) blueberries
-a minced red chili
-about ½ cup sweet onion sliced razor thin
-about ½ teaspoon white pepper

  1. Whisk together the vinegar, salt, sugar and water until the solids dissolve. Dump the pickling liquid into a Mason jar or plastic container (in other words, something nonreactive).
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the pickle, then stir the chutney or give it a good shake.
  3. Refrigerate the chutney overnight and use a slotted spoon to transfer it to a bowl for service: Otherwise it will be watery.



- Vary the recipe with the vinegar and sugar of your choice; add red pepper flakes or nothing at all instead of the chili; choose shallot instead of onion.